De BRY, Johann Theodor, (1560-1623) and Johann Israel de Bry (1565-1609). Part V, Plate 11, Fashion and Style of a Ballgame of Those from Banda. From the "Little Voyages"

$ 8,500.00

Plate XI, Weise und Artdesz Ballspielens deren von Banda
From Part V of Johann Theodor de Bry (1561-1623) and Johann Isreal de Bry's (1565-1609) Orientalische Indien (“Little Voyages”), Funffter Theil der Orientalischen Indien...Frankfurt: 1601
Engraving with original, early 17th century hand color heightened with gold on laid paper; paper dimensions: approximately: 11 1/2 x 7 1/2 inches
Printed by Matthias Becker
van Groesen 63

BANDANESE SOCCER, SOUTHERN MALUKU ISLANDS

Jacob van Heemskerck put in at Banda in 1599, while his colleague Van Warwijck sailed to Ambon and Ternate.

"Keeping the ball aloft" was the name of this Bandanese game. Use of the hands was not allowed. The young Bandanese stand in a circle and pass the ball to each other using their feet. The Dutch are not participating, but stand on the side cheering the players on.

Title: Fashion and style of a ballgame of those from Banda

Text: Those from Banda play in the following manner with the ball plenty of them are standing in a circle one of them stands in the middle he throws the ball into the air and then the one who gets the ball first hits it to his other companions which they do with their feet because they don't need their hands and those who mishit or don't hit the ball right are being laughed at and taunted several jump in the air the others turn around and still know how to pass the ball skillfully this is a very honorable game to them. Their balls with which they play are made out of twisted branches and almost look like a sphere. Here is also an illustration how those from Bada face their enemies in war in one hand they hold a general shield and in the other one several spears which they throw with extraordinary skills out of their hands and when they are out of those they take their saber which they call Padang and which they hide behind their shield they cause great damage to each other with those.

ENGRAVED PLATES FROM VOLUME V OF DE BRY’S ‘LITTLE VOYAGES’ OF THE EAST INDIES

Documenting the East Indian Journey led by Admiral Jacob Cornelius van Neck (1598), featuring Depictions of: Mauritius, Tuban, Banda, Ternate, Molluccas, Banda, and Gammalamme

The very first Dutch voyage to the East Indies took place in 1595 and was led by the brothers Frederik and Cornelis de Houtman. The second expedition followed in 1598, led by Admiral Jacob Cornelius van Neck. Eight ships left Amsterdam on this journey.

One of these ships was captained by Jacob van Heemskerck, who earlier had participated in the arctic expedition led by Willem Barents in 1595- 1597, an ill-fated journey that ended with the famous overwintering in Novaya Zemlya. In addition to Heemskerck there was a third lead- ing figure on this trip, Vice Admiral Wijbrand van Warwijck.

The eight ships departed in the direction of southern Africa. After the Cape of Good Hope, half the fleet put in at Madagascar, the other half went to Mauritius. The admiral met up with the other captains in Bantam (on the northern point of Java).

After loading the ships with a great quantity of spices there, Van Neck sent vice admirals Van Heemskerck and Van Warwijck on to the Maluku Islands (formerly known as the Moluccas, or Spice Islands). He himself started the return journey. After 14 months, on 19 July 1599, Van Neck returned to the  Netherlands with a rich cargo: 600,000 pounds of pepper, 250,000 pounds of cloves, 20,000 pounds of nutmeg and 200 pounds of mace.

When Van Neck distributed the profits among the expedition's shareholders, Van Warwijck and Van Heemskerck were already far along in their journey. They first put in at the Javan city of Tuban, where they bought food and visited the palace of the local king. They continued on to Ambon, where they arrived in 1599. A few trading posts were opened on the Maluku island of Ambon for the purchase of cloves. Commerce also took place on Banda, part of the southern Maluku Islands and at the time the only island in the world where nutmeg grew.

De Bry's prints are illustrations to the original travel accounts of Van Neck and Warwijck and were probably drawn in the Netherlands after the expedition's return, on the basis of sketches that made by the crew.*

*Research provided by Martine Gosselink, head of the History department at the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, Netherlands.

**Translated from original German by Karl Nesseler.

Description compiled by Erik Brockett who is pleased to provide additional information relating to this or other examples of the work of Johann Theodor de Bry available at Arader Galleries. He can be contacted at erikbrockett@aradergalleries.com